WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2017
sar•sa•pa•ril•la /ˌsæspəˈrɪlə, ˌsɑrspə-/USA pronunciation   n., pl.  -las. 
  1. Plant Biology[countable] a vine that grows in warm regions, having heart-shaped leaves.
  2. Plant Biology[uncountable] the root of this vine, used as a flavoring.
  3. Fooda soft drink, such as root beer, flavored with this: [uncountable]sold sarsaparilla in those old drugstores.[countable]Two sarsaparillas, please.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2017
sar•sa•pa•ril•la  (sas′pə rilə, sär′sə pə-, sär′spə-),USA pronunciation n. 
  1. Plant Biologyany of various climbing or trailing tropical American plants belonging to the genus Smilax, of the lily family, having alternate leaves, umbels of flowers, and a root that has been used in the treatment of psoriasis.
  2. Plant Biologythe root.
  3. an extract or other preparation made of this root.
  4. Fooda soft drink flavored with an extract of this root, as root beer.
  • Spanish zarzaparrilla, equivalent. to zarza bush + parrilla (parr(a) vine + -illa diminutive suffix)
  • 1570–80

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

sarsaparilla /ˌsɑːsəpəˈrɪlə ˌsɑːspə-/ n
  1. any of various prickly climbing plants of the tropical American genus Smilax having large aromatic roots and heart-shaped leaves: family Smilacaceae
  2. the dried roots of any of these plants, formerly used as a medicine
  3. a nonalcoholic drink prepared from these roots
Etymology: 16th Century: from Spanish zarzaparrilla, from zarza a bramble, (from Arabic šaras) + -parrilla, from Spanish parra a climbing plant

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